Held in the Black Rock Desert of Northwestern Nevada, the annual Burning Man festival could be more accurately described as a communal gathering of the artistic tribes. Set to spark the imagination of the creatively inclined on August 27, Burning Man’s temporary community – Black Rock City – is also a hotbed for police activity.
Despite Nevada’s voters legalizing recreational marijuana last November, attendees headed out to the remote desert location to embrace the purity of madness on the playa should be cognizant of a few important facts:
Burning Man Occurs On Federal Land
The Black Rock Desert and the Burning Man event are held on federal land governed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), any recreational marijuana possession is considered a criminal offense. Individuals with a medical marijuana card who are caught with their medicine on BLM land would face civil charges rather than criminal.
Gifting Marijuana Is Trafficking
Providing marijuana to others as a “gift” is still considered drug trafficking under federal law. Those caught selling marijuana at Burning Man or those who are found in possession of more than 1 ounce of pot will likely be prosecuted under Nevada law.
Gate Road Precautions
The Gate Road entrance is a law enforcement gauntlet. Also on federal property, the main entrance to the Burning Man Festival is loaded with police personnel. Make sure to fix any broken tail lights or other potential minor infractions.
No Weed At Burning Man
Sure, you can buy recreational marijuana in Nevada but anyone caught smoking in Black Rock City or their personal camps could face a citation of $675.
Marijuana DUI Threshold
Nevada law enforcement views individuals driving with more than 2 ng of THC in their blood as impaired — even if you’re driving a Discofish.
Undercover To Cash In
Law enforcement comes in all shapes and sizes at Burning Man. Policed by BLM law enforcement, the FBI, and the Pershing County Sheriff’s Department, the nine-day event is an annual money maker for local law enforcement.
A therapeutic experience for the majority of attendees – those who bring weed need to stay alert and keep their stash in the tent or RV.
Photos Courtesy of The BLM and Flickr